Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Will Wal-Mart worker death change Black Friday?


The chaotic crowds that show up in search of rock bottom prices on Black Friday took a deadly turn this year, when a worker at Wal-Mart, Jdimytai Damour, was trampled and killed by a crowd of frenzied shoppers at one of the discount retailer’s stores in Long Island.

The shocking death made headlines around the world, showing the dark side of American consumerism. A reader identified as Life Faith wrote in to talk Shop Talk to describe the harrowing experience of being caught in the crowd at that Wal-Mart store on Friday morning:

The crowd had a strong wave-like effect and grabbed us in. i almost broke my arm trying to hold my family together. People just kept pushing and grabbing, everyone was for themselves basically, some even punching just to get through

i do regret going that day, and it just shows me how animalistic humans can be.

In a blog posting on On Faith, Susan Thistlethwaite, a professor of theology at Chicago Theological Seminary, said Black Friday has now taken on a new meaning.